Although by his own admission, Paul was not an eloquent man, he was an erudite man when it comes to his writings. So it is not a mistake when he chooses some words to describe himself or any other person or matter.Continue reading
Thomas, one of the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ, is widely labeled as the doubting disciple. But not many pay attention to the fact that he was humble and inquisitive at the same time.
So you can call him a humble questioner rather than the widely held unpalatable appellation, “the doubting Thomas.” You will see the reason in this post.Continue reading
Building healthy self-esteem is not a journey of just one day. It is something you should continue to work at so long as you are aware that your self-confidence is not at the right level.
But you have to examine yourself to be sure that you have not assumed some familiar dispositions that are hindering your progress.
Realise that your inconsistency is a major setback to your success in blogging. I’m telling you that now in case you don’t know.
Let me put it in another way: You cannot create a memorable blog if you are inconsistent with it. You can be sure about that!Continue reading
Who doesn’t know Cristiano Ronaldo? Do you know he survived an abortion attempt when he was conceived?Continue reading
It’s that time of the year when we celebrate our fathers – on Fathers’ Day, every third Sunday in the Month of June.Continue reading
“I can’t breathe,” has now become the rallying chant for the Black Lives Matter massive protests in major cities around the world. It has also become the slogan being used against social injustices of diverse kinds.Continue reading
You don’t have to be a good student of history to have heard anything about King Alexander. Though he lived several centuries ago, people in our days have not ceased making reference to him in their speeches and strategy meetings.Continue reading
Sometimes your decisions come out good and you are glad. But sometimes, your decisions bring you nothing but guilt and shame, of which you are sad.
How can you avoid the trap of making those decisions that will make you regret at the end of the day?Continue reading
As children of God, we have various promises He has promised to perform in our lives. And as you already know, these promises do not take place automatically; a time element is usually involved.Continue reading
Thanks to the covid 19 lockdown, I was finally able to have the needed free time to rummage through my bookshelf for some books I had always wanted to read but never had the sufficient time to do so.
One of such books was The Church Girl. I was delighted to still have the autographed copies, which I had erroneously assumed had been ‘borrowed’ off the shelf.
The texts in the following paragraphs are my humble attempt at reviewing the book.Continue reading
The novel coronavirus pandemic also known as covid 19 is still ravaging various parts of the world. Although concerted efforts are being made to contain the pandemic, the global picture is still very gloomy.
For a disease as deadly as the coronavirus pandemic, it will make a lot of sense for us to figure out and be absolutely sure what caused it – for posterity sake.
But going by various reports monitored on social media, there is hardly a worldwide consensus as to the actual cause of the disease. As a result, several conspiracy theories exist…Continue reading
In His birth
Divinity became enwrapped in humanity
For the salvation of mankind.
In His death
Divinity suffered in the hands of humanity
Paying the price for the salvation of mankind.
In His resurrection
Divinity had Him forever established
As the only Saviour of mankind.
Are you restrategising for the life after the covid 19 pandemic? How will your life change when the covid 19 lockdown is over? Or is it possible that it’s not going to change at all?
As you know, this lockdown is not going to continue forever. At some point in future (no matter how long that will take), the stay-at-home order will be lifted.Continue reading
A few days from now, Christiandom will be celebrating the Easter, an annual event to mark the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.Continue reading
The city where you live or work may be on a lockdown but your life should not be on a shutdown. Even as much movement is restricted, there are things you can do within your home to maximise your life during the lockdown.
Due to the covid 19 pandemic movement of people around the world has been largely restricted. The slogan is now “stay at home”, “stay safe,” or “work from home.”
However, not everyone is equipped with the facility to work from home. So apart from working, what else can you do to maximize your time at home in a period of lockdown?Continue reading
All these statements underscore our strong belief in the efficacy of prayers in resolving difficult situations. And I am convinced that in our individual lives, we all have had instances where prayer saved the day for us in our moments of crisis.Continue reading
Has any good thing come out from covid-19 lockdown?
With the stay-at-home order by the government, we have slowed down significantly from our fast-paced daily lives to the one where our movement has been largely restricted.Continue reading
Jeremiah 29:8 AMP
1. False prophets are always amongst you
Some one said, “if the devil would come as the devil I would know him and avoid him.” But you see, the devil is a master of disguise, so he would put on different forms to deceive you.
One of such forms is familiarity. He comes to you through things and people you are familiar with so that you will be caught off-guard.
The same thing can be said of false prophets. You can find them amongst people around you, people you already know and people that belong to the same group or church with you.
It would be a serious mistake to assume that there are no false prophets around you. Please take another look at God’s warning through Prophet Jeremiah:
“Do not let your [false] prophets who are among you and your diviners deceive you…” (emphasis mine).
Did you notice that the warning is against prophets who are amongst you, not the ones that are afar off?
Not strangers, but familiar people; those who present themselves as harmless, yet have hidden evil agenda.
Speaking along this line, Jesus echoed a warning to His disciples saying, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves” Matthew 7:15.
If a wolf comes as a wolf, you will see it and escape to safety. But if a wolf disguises as a sheep, you will not immediately take the requisite caution, thereby increasing the chances of your being caught unawares.
That’s the kind of danger you are exposed to with false prohets if you are not careful enough. Thankfully, you are not at their mercy.
As Jesus assures us, “You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act.”
2. False prophets want your attention
Do you have any idea of what it means to be an attention seeker? Think of someone who behaves in a certain way with a view to eliciting your attention or validation.
That’s what false prophets do; they put on shows to grab your attention.
But getting your attention is not an end in itself. What they really want is for you to believe in them as though they were true prophets.
As Jeremiah puts it, they want you to “attach some significance to their prophecies.” It is up to you whether or not to oblige them.
3. False prophets want you to attach some significance to their prophecies
Even though false prophets know in themselves that they are false and self-serving, they still want you to take them seriously.
Once they have your attention, they will want you to attach some significance to what they say. And that is where the danger really is.
But as prophet Jeremiah advises us, “pay no attention and attach no significance to the dreams which [false prophets] dream…”
In other words, when you see a false prophet, pay no attention to him or her and do not attach any significance to whatever he or she has to say.
The above advice is worth repeating: Pay no attention to a false prophet and attach no significance to his or her words. We will take a deeper look at that in the next post.
Thank you for reading and please leave me a comment.
Owing to this ravaging disease, many deaths have been reported across the world. And the number is increasing daily.Continue reading
From that Chinese city where the virus started, it has spread to many places around the world. From Italy to Germany, UK, US, France, etc it has spread in alarming proportions.
Even my beloved country Nigeria is not spared. From just one case a month ago, a total of 50 has now been officially recorded.
If that is not alarming, the global statistics is. With over 382,000 cases and over 16,500 deaths so far around the world, the picture is really very bad.
Thankfully, over 102,500 recoveries have been reported. But the scourge has not been fully tamed.
The result of all this is that there is fear in the land. Movements have been restricted, lifestyles altered in immense proportions, reshaping the way we do things.
In effect, life is no longer the same. Everything as we used to know it has changed, sadly not for the better yet.
Apart from the loss of lives, world economy has taken the worse hit. Most stock markets have lost a huge chunk of their value in the last few weeks.
Crude oil price is at its lowest ebb in the last five years. This is not good for Nigeria my country that depends on the sale of crude oil for 90 percent of her annual foreign exchange earnings.
Beyond that, we have seen the government take some radical decisions. Our international borders have now been shut: no going out and no coming in.
Airlines are grounded. Interstate travels also restricted.
Hand washing with soap and water or health sanitizer is one culture everyone is practicing.
People are afraid to mingle. This is the era of social distancing. For some people it is self-isolation.
The year of 2020 will surely go down in history as the year of social distancing. Everyone is trying to stay safe from Corona virus.
Federal and State government workers have been ordered to stay at home to prevent further spread of the virus. “Don’t worry, your salaries will still paid in full” assured the government.
Even the private sector employers are not left out. Many of them have ordered their staff to work from home until further notice.
Except for a few instances, working from home has not been part of our experience in this part of the world. But now the by-word has become, if you must, work from home, stay at home and stay safe.
As I am typing this I am at home, with a view to staying safe from the pandemic. Thanks to our employer, some of us don’t have to go to work this week. Yet our salaries will be paid in full.
By implication, while it is already given that most companies incomes for the year might take a deep due to coronavirus pandemic, their costs will certainly rise. It is hoped the situation doesn’t get worse.
Coronavirus scare has also affected the way we worship. By Government order, no church or mosque can gather 20 people in one place in the name of worship.
For most mega churches here, services have always been streamed online but we still preferred to attend physical fellowship.
All that has now changed. More of my fellow citizens have bought into the idea of attending online church services.
Schools around the nation have since been shut down. Scheduled weddings have been postponed. Sports, entertainment and other social events have been put on hold.
Let me stop here for now. The point has already been made. Coronavirus pandemic has reshaped the way we do things. How long this forced lifestyle change will last is something no one is yet sure of.
In what way has the coronavirus scare reshaped your life?
As I responded to the comments one after another, I saw one that picked my interest: Atheism is not a choice. This post is a further attempt of mine to address that notion.
Is the claim that atheism is not a choice correct? I believe it is not.
In my own opinion, atheism is definitely a choice. I will like to hear what you think, but I have my own reasons for saying so.
First and foremost, believing that God exists is a choice some of us had to make. If the act of believing that God exists is a choice, the act of not believing is also a choice – whether active or passive.
Remember the saying, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” Either way, there is a failing.
At some point, Jesus made a remarkable statement that adds credence to what we are saying here:
“Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me” Matthew 12:30.
You see, it’s either you have declared for Jesus or you have declared against Him.
Simply put, there is no middle ground; it’s either you have chosen to be with Jesus or you have chosen not to be with Him.
And if you have chosen not to be with Him, it means you have chosen to be against Him. Either way there is a choice and that choice is yours.
That is to say, if you believe God exists, it’s a choice you have made. If you believe He doesn’t exist, it’s also a choice you have made.
In conclusion, it is incorrect to claim that atheism is not a choice. This is because, we are all responsible for our individual choices.
What we believe is our choice, what we don’t believe is our choice.
We believe God exists, it’s our choice. We believe He doesn’t exist, it’s our choice.
So when next you hear someone say, “atheism is not a choice,” please recognise that statement for what is: a deception.
Do you agree that atheism is a choice?
In our previous post, we established the fact that there is a writer in you. We also added that you should be intentional about doing things that will empower that writer in you.
There are things you can begin to do right now to begin empowering the writer in you. If you are interested in finding out what they are, today is your lucky day because that’s why I’m writing this post.
3 things you can do to start empowering the writer in you
1. Begin to read more books than you have ever done before
If your dream of becoming a writer means anything worthwhile to you, then you have to be a reader first. It is true that writers write, but it is also true that writers read a lot.
If you cannot bring yourself to the discipline of reading, you cannot subject yourself to the discipline of writing. Apart from the vast information you gain from reading, it also helps you learn the style of writing from other writers.
Read voraciously. Read wide. Don’t be intimidated by the block of texts you come across on the pages of books or on posts online.
Writing comes from reading, and reading is the finest teacher of how to write” –Annie Proulx
regularly every day. Don’t go to bed any day without having read something. Yes, it is that serious!
When I was studying accounting at the undergraduate level, my mantra was, “any day without studying accounting is no day.” (Thanks to a friend who gave me that idea). With that, I was able to motivate myself to study the course until I got the proper handle on it.
You may as well adopt that philosophy, so that no day will pass without you reading something. After all, you want to empower the writer in you.
2. Begin to train on the art of writing
One of the side benefits of reading is that you get to see firsthand how other writers present their works and to learn from them.
To begin empowering the writer in you, apart from committing yourself to continuous reading, another thing you should do is to get trained on the art of writing.
I am not suggesting that you should go back to school for a degree in communication arts. Well if you are still very young, that might not be a bad option. But I want to believe you are eager to birth your writing career so you don’t want to waste more time!
If that is so, you can go through the quicker route. Take condensed trainings on writing. Register and attend writing workshops – both terrestrial and online.
If learning via video is your thing, do so by any means. Thanks to Youtube, you can find numerous materials on writing to watch and learn from.
3. Start writing now
After all said and done, what is the next practical thing to start doing? You guessed right! Start writing!
If you read all the books there are to read and you attend all writing workshops possible, and you don’t get down to actually start writing, you haven’t helped yourself enough and you will still be very far from achieving your goal of becoming a writer.
Start putting pen to paper and begin to write or get your hands on your computer keyboard and start punching away. You know the computer is an obedient tool. It will record whatever you type in, and it’s not going to tell you to stop writing. So why the waste of time?
If you want to become a writer, you must start writing something. Write stories (real or imagined). One quick way to achieve that is to start blogging. So start a personal blog where you can practice writing for others to read.
Write poems, write anything that comes to your mind. Write about your experiences. Be creative, be imaginative. Just write.
At this point don’t worry about whether someone will like your write-up or not. Just write! The only book that may not be read is the one you fail to write.
Don’t wait until you have become a writer to start writing. It doesn’t work that way! You can’t put the cart before the horse and expect to go anywhere.
Your dream of becoming a writer is achievable! While you wait for that to come through, start doing what you can do now: start empowering the writer in you. Read more, learn more and write more. You will get there!
What else are doing to empower the writer in you?
There is a writer in you. And the things you do will empower or disempower him or her.
Needless to say, if you truly want to become a writer, you should be doing things that empower the writer in you. And you should be intentional in doing so.
Many people want to become writers (which is good), but only a few will actualise that dream in their lifetime.
Presumably because good writing is not an easy task to accomplish. And because it’s not that easy, many people get discouraged along the way; they give up on their dream of becoming a writer. And that’s sad!
That should not be your own story. I mean, you should not give up on your writing dream.
Giving up a dream may lead to regrets.
For the sake of emphasis, let me say it again: the fact that writing is not a cup of tea should not discourage you from pursuing your writing goals. There is no worthwhile goal in life that is not difficult to achieve.
You of all people should know that to accomplish anything great in life, you have to work hard and work smart at it. Writing is not different from that.
I know you don’t mind doing something great that is worth writing about. But don’t you also want to write something that is worth reading? I bet you do because I know you can!
I am convinced there is a writer in you. And I want to encourage you to do all you can to reveal him or her to the world.
In other words, you can actualise your dream of becoming a writer. Start preparing your mindset now.
First you have to believe that it is achievable. Then focus on it. Pursue it.
Apply yourself to writing. Be committed to it. You will achieve it sooner than you think.
Whether you like it or not, let me say it again: there is a writer inside everyone of us. Don’t let him or her die.
Start doing things that empower that writer in you. Soonest, your dream of becoming a writer will become an awesome reality.
In the next post, I will show you three simple things you can begin to do right now to start empowering the writer in you.
Do you believe there is a writer in you?
I hope you will appreciate what I mean when I say the blog was started without much serious consideration. It was just a simple step I took to share my thoughts and views to the world…
On the journey to the 300th post, I’ve grown and I’m still growing. I have had my highs and lows, a fair share of negative criticisms and thankfully some positive feedback. So now there is no looking back anymore.
What I started five years ago like a child’s play has now metamorphosed into something bigger and far significant than I had anticipated. And I’m loving the experience all together.
As at the time I published my first post, I had no idea that as many people as are reading my blog presently would be interested in whatever I had to share to the world. The only thing I was sure of was that I had something to share…
Secondly, I thought that I had found an outlet to not only share my thoughts with the world but also to hone by writing skills. And to a good extent, I am achieving those objectives already.
My sincere appreciation goes to everyone of my followers and the over forty thousand readers who have spent their valuable time reading my blog and also to all those who thought it wise to give a feedback in forms of likes for my posts and comments on the blog.
I thank you all immensely for always reading and commenting.
Having come this far, I don’t intend to give up now or anytime soon; I’m promising you that I’m not going to stop writing, neither will I quit on the blogging mission. And I would count on you to continue reading and sending in as much feedback as possible.
As we begin a new journey towards the next 300 posts, let’s do it together. And also, feel free to invite your friends and family along.
Give or take, there will be something for everyone who stops by on the blog. More than ever before, my blogging mission has been strengthened and enlarged for the benefits of you my readers.
It doesn’t matter if you agree with all my views or not, your perspective is very important to me. Just let me what you think in the comment section. As always, I promise to reply all your comments.
Thank you for being there!
I would like to ask you: how do you spell Valentine? In other words, what does Valentine’s Day mean to you?
Some people say it’s Lovers’ Day. So if you are not married or not in a romantic relationship, you shouldn’t celebrate it?
Well, your answer to that question depends on what you believe. As you know your beliefs affect the things you do and how you do them.
If you are a believer in Christ like me, you know the word of God should guide you – whatever do. For instance, if you are not married and you are open to observing the Valentine’s Day celebration, you should know that sex should not be on the table as part of the activities to mark the day.
Don’t you know the reason? Sex is permissible by God only within the confines of marriage. So if you are not married yet, you have no business with sex – whether it is Valentine’s Day or not.
As unpopular as that opinion may sound today, it is part of what is required of us as followers of Jesus Christ. You are in disobedience if you think otherwise.
I’m not suggesting you should or should not celebrate the Saint Valentine’s Day. The choice is entirely up to you. But if your desire is to please God with your life, you will agree with me that you will not celebrate with reckless abandon.
Until recently, I didn’t reckon with Saint Valentine’s Day celebration. The reason was that it was modelled around me in a way that went contrary to my ‘moral’ upbringing (forgive me if that sounds like pride).
While growing up, Valentine’s Day was about hooking up with a boy/girl friend, attending parties and even having sex. But none of those activities appealed to some of us young believers in Christ, so we thought Saint Valentine’s Day was not worth celebrating.
But then later in life, I met my wife and discovered that unlike me, she cared a little about Valentine’s Day; not in any odious way, but in a way of sharing thoughts of love with people that mattered to you, giving them gifts or being with them. So I keyed in a bit.
Since then every Valentine’s Day I get her a little gift to ‘show’ my thought of love towards her, without any elaborate celebrations. And that’s all there is for me.
I remember there was a year all I could get her was a strand of rose I bought off the shelf in a supermarket. The most important thing was that I showed her I cared (and I still do).
You may say I could do better than that. Yes, you are probably right, but please let’s leave that discussion for another day.
May be your experience is different from mine, that’s fine! That’s why I’m writing this post: to hear from you what Valentine’s Day means to you.
I will like to conclude this way: If they say Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate love, then we should not make it all about romance and sex. It should be about love in the truest sense of it: loving God with all your heart and loving your neighbour as yourselves.
Every February 14th, the Saint Valentine’s Day is celebrated in many places around the world. On that day, people want to be with those they love or with those that love them, expressing their love to one another either in words or in action or both as the case may be.
Irrespective of whatever form the Valentine’s day is celebrated, the bottom line is the individual quest to satisfy the need to love and be loved. Unfortunately, many of such quests for love end up in disappointments.
What if you found the Love that never fails? What if I told you there is a kind of love you can bank on every time and not just on Valentine’s Day?
What if I told you Jesus is the most special One you need to be with? What if I told you, you have everything to gain and nothing to lose if you made Jesus your Valentine?
Jesus is ready to be your Valentine for life if you would let Him. He is ready to be the most special person in your life.
Why should you make Jesus your Valentine? This post gives you three fundamental reasons.
Three Reasons You Should Make Jesus Your Valentine – Your Most Special One
1. Jesus loves you completely and unconditionally
You will never find a lover like Jesus, who loves you 100% and over. And He loves you irrespective of your estate in life, your racial background or your religious affiliation.
Jesus loves you without reservations, and without limits. His love for you is not tied to your performance – whatever you do, He loves you anyway.
His love is already freely given and it’s yours for the taking. So make Him your Valentine and accept His love into your heart. This will make a whole lot of difference in your life.
2. Jesus forgives your sins completely
Jesus loves you so much He gave His life to earn forgiveness for all your sins.
Every human being alive has the question of sin to grapple with. The Bible says, “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” But you see, you don’t have to remain a sinner for the rest of your life.
The simple advice I will give you is this: even though you were born a sinner, don’t die a sinner. The only way not to die a sinner is to consciously, willingly and wholeheartedly identify with Jesus as your Lord and personal Saviour.
Make Him your Valentine – your special One. Begin to love Him back because, as we noted earlier, He already loves unconditionally and completely.
3. Jesus protects your interest eternally
When you accept the unconditional love of God into your heart and also receives forgiveness for all your sins, you enter into a special relationship with God that extends beyond your lifetime. He will be with you while you are alive on earth and you will be with Him when you pass on to the other side of this life.
In other words, if you would identify with Jesus here on earth, He will protect your interest in this world and in the world to come. You may have heard some people say that this life is all there is; that there is no life after death.
That position is in correct because the Bible clearly shows that there is life after death. And that life after death can only be spent with God in Heaven or with Satan in hell.
You can make Jesus the most special in your life. He loves you more than anyone else. He paid the price for the forgiveness of your sins and He is the only One that guarantees your future eternally.
The choice is yours to make and your lifetime is your only chance to make it. So would you like to make Jesus your Valentine for life? Leave a comment.
I have previously written about my favourite post in 2019. The choice of that post was based entirely on what I liked about it and the effect it had on me.
I’m going further by presenting to you the top 5 posts on this blog for the year 2019. But this time, the choice is based solely on the posts with the highest number of likes by my wordpress readers.
Thanks to the blog’s analytics, the ranking has already been done for me automatically and it is my pleasure to run through it with you:
I hope you will find some new gems as you review the five most liked posts in 2019 with me:
This post ranked at no. 2 in 2018, but it climbed to the first position in 2019.
In that post, I shared my personal experience regarding how blogging has contributed to my personal development in several ways. I’m convinced that anyone who has blogged for at least a year could identify with some of the points highlighted in the post.
And if you are someone that has been dragging your feet on starting a blog, reading that post might motivate you to launch your blog without further delay.
This post was at the top of the ladder a year ago in 2018 before being displaced to the second place in the year under review. It compared the issue of racism in America with that of tribalism in Nigeria.
America has the biggest economy in the world and Nigeria holds the ace in Africa. Beyond that comparison, there is another parallel that can be drawn between the two giants.
While racism exists [in America and everywhere else] as a result of differences in colour of the skin, tribalism [in Nigeria and in other places] hinges on differences in birth-roots. The post recognised that both racism and tribalism are common societal evils that must be dealt a decisive blow in order for us to have a better world.
This post became a new entrant into the top 5 hall of fame during the just outgone year. You will find the tips in the post to be very helpful in your blogging experience, most especially if you are a new kid on the block of personal blogging.
You can learn from those ahead of you in the blogging world without having to repeat the inevitable mistakes they had to make while they were just starting off. For instance, I found that having a blog is like having a baby; you have to nurture it, feed it regularly and ensure that it remains healthy.
This 2018 third-position-ranked post remained popular in 2019 (although a little less than it was in the year before). I want to believe that no blogger hates having followers. And you don’t want to be the author of a blog that no-one wants to follow.
So if people are not following your blog, there must be some reasons they are not doing so and they are worth finding out. The post is my personal take on why I don’t follow some blogs.
From no. 4 position in 2018, this post moved a step down to no. 5 in 2019. But that does not undermine the importance of the central message of the post: we should find reasons to forgive offences because they will surely come.
Those who have not known how to forgive offences have not known how to be happy. You erode your capacity to be happy if you refuse to forgive those and anyone who offend you.
I hope you enjoyed going through the review of some of my most liked posts in 2019, like I did?
However, you would appreciate the fact that the purpose of the review is not to give myself a pat on the back or to blow my trumpet. Rather, I just want to highlight some of the most liked posts in order to expose them to more readership.
I must add that doing the review has done me a personal good. I could see that most of the these top posts under review were published in the year 2018 and none of my posts in 2019 made it to that hall of fame.
More so, from my little beginning in 2015, this blog has done progressively better each year till 2018. But the onward trend was not sustained in 2019.
And that’s a humbling realisation for me because it shows that I will have to up the game in the nascent year by publishing more posts that enrich the reading experience of my wordpress audience.
Let’s stop here and look forward to what lies ahead for us in the blogging journey of 2020. Thank you for reading and don’t forget to leave a comment.
Looking back now, which one of your posts written in 2019 would you consider your most favourite?
In this post is my simple answer to that same question, and it is in response to a SlimJim’s A question for bloggers: What is your favourite post that you wrote for 2019?
As he rightly pointed out in his short post, your favourite post for the year doesn’t necessarily mean the most popular post on your blog. But rather, the one you really like yourself or you enjoyed writing most or that challenged you or inspired you the most – whether or not it gathered many views, likes and comments.
For me, I think my favourite post for 2019 will be one of my midyear posts entitled The problem of atheists finally figured out. It was the second post I published after I carefully studied one of the hottest interactions between Jesus and some of the pretentious religious leaders of the day – the Pharisees.
In a way, I came to realise that there is a similarity between the attitude of the then Pharisees and the modern day atheists, especially the ones online.
As someone who frequently engages in online conversations with atheists visiting this blog, I have often wondered why most of them say the (foolish) things they say about God and the notion of His existence.
“Why can’t they just get it?” I have often asked under my breath.
However my bewilderment got relieved when I heard Jesus vehemently point out the mistakes of the Pharisees as recorded in the Gospels: “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God” – Matthew 22:29 (emphasis mine).
Those words were an eye-opener for me because I could surmise that atheists have the same problems too; they neither understand the scriptures nor know the power of God.
My second most favourite post for the year
Let me also use this medium to talk about my second most favourite post for the outgoing year. The post was inspired by my study of the book of Malachi in the course of 2019.
In the Two Antidotes To Divorce Hidden Away in Malachi, I talked about the fact God intends for our marriages to be a lifelong union. And that to prevent divorce, we must guard our hearts against it and be faithful to our spouses. That’s so simple yet many people miss it. How sad!
You can check out the two posts and let me know what you think.
You looked forward to Christmas all year long. Now the celebration for this year is over.
It will be another 360 something days before you will have another chance to celebrate it again. That is if you are still alive.
Please don’t get me wrong there. I’m not suggesting that you would die before next year’s Christmas. But I’m not denying that the possibility exists for all of us.
Come to think of it, not everyone who celebrated Christmas last year’s Christmas was around to join in this year’s celebration. And as sure as the as the rising sun tomorrow, not everyone who celebrated this year’s Christmas will be alive to celebrate the coming year’s.
You know I’m not being a prophet of doom here. It is the sad reality of the life we found ourselves in: after all said and done, death is inevitable.
The Bible says, “There’s time for everything under the Sun.”
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance… Ecclesiastes 3:1-11.
Let’s take further exploration of the first part of the above quote:
A time to be born, a time to die
Jesus had the time He was born to this earth. He had the time He had to die as well. Gratefully He had the time to resurrect as well.
If you are reading this now, I know you had the time you were born; you had a beginning. Or don’t you have a birthday?
And if you had a beginning on this earth, you are also going to have an ending. It is called death – the way of all mankind.
Unlike when you were born when everyone jubilated, when you die, people will cry. I mean if you are not Adolf Hitler or anyone else in his mould, I don’t see why anyone should be glad when you die.
But whether anyone is sad or happy when you die, it would not really matter to you. What would matter would be how you have used your short life on earth to prepare for the eternity that death would be the doorway to.
If you have prepared well for eternity, death will be a gain to you. But if you have not, death will be a great loss to you. Regrettably, it will be too late by then to make amends.
But how can you prepare well for eternity?
To be honest, the answer is simpler than you think. It requires simple faith in Jesus Christ, the birth of whom we just celebrated and will continue to celebrate in the years ahead.
Think back a little to the Christmas story: a virgin gave birth to Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the whole world. (See Matthew 1:20-21).
You see, that’s why we celebrate Christmas every year: a Saviour was born to save us from our sins. In this Saviour lies the hope of all humanity. But it is sad that many are not seeing it that way.
Now that Christmas is over, the question I would like to ask you is this: do you have a personal relationship by faith with the Celebrant? By that I mean, have you accepted Jesus to be your Lord and Saviour?
If your answer is yes, I will advise you to nurture that relationship so closely that nothing will come between you and Him. You have His assurance that nothing can separate you from His love till you will get to meet Him face to face on the other side of this life.
On the other hand, if you have not put your faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal Saviour, you have between now and the next Christmas to do so. Actually, no one can guarantee that you will be alive till the next Christmas. So that means NOW is the best chance you have to invite Jesus into your life.
Please wait no further, “For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation” 2 Corrinthians 6:2.
What do you say?
In many places around the world, people celebrate Christmas for various reasons. And the celebration is usually done with a lot of fanfare.
But beyond the fanfare with which it is celebrated, we must not lose sight of the fact that the essence of Christmas is Jesus Christ Himself. Without Jesus as the centre of focus, every celebration of Christmas is an empty celebration.
That brings us to the question:
Beyond the fanfare, what is Christmas about?
1. It is about the birth of a Saviour
Jesus was born to be the Saviour of the world. He was born with the grandest mission ever: To save us from our sins.
Before Jesus Christ was born to the earth, an Angel had said to Joseph about Mary, “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” Matthew 1:21.
His name Jesus literally means Saviour. In other words, his name encapsulates His mission.
He was born the Messiah, “the promised deliverer of the Jewish nation prophesied in the Hebrew Bible.”
But not just to His people alone, His saving grace extends to all mankind. “So that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life (John 3:15).
2. It is about the coming of divinity to earth.
One of the core doctrines in Christianity is the belief that Jesus Christ is God in the flesh. When Jesus was born, He brought divinity to humanity.
Jesus is also called Immauel, meaning God with us. The second person of the Trinity stepped into time and be born on earth as a baby.
The incarnation is that event where the second person of the Trinity, the Word, became flesh and dwelt among us – Matt Slick
And throughout His life on Earth, Jesus never suffered any identity crisis: He knew who He is: God in the flesh.
At one point in Jesus’ ministry, Philip, one of the twelve disciples of Jesus said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”
Jesus’ response to him was most unequivocal: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? John 14:8-9.
3. It is the birth of the soon-coming King
The birth of Jesus was His first coming to earth. His second coming is still a future event, but it is going to be a sure event.
His first birth by a virgin was foretold and it did happened as prophesied. There is no doubt in my mind that His second-coming which has also been prophesied, will sooner or later take place.
Why not under-estimating Christmas we should not lose sight of the fact that Jesus will come back again – not as a baby, but as a King.
At the ascension of Jesus, His disciples received an angelic assurance that the same way they saw their Master taken up in the clouds into Heaven is the same way He would come back to the earth.
“Men of Galilee,” said the two Angels who accosted the disciples, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!” Acts 1: 11.
4. It is the birth of the One who will judge the world
Guess who will be the Judge of the world? Jesus! That’s right, Jesus will be the one to judge the people of the world.
“The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son” – John 5:22.
Here is how the Bible further paints the picture of the judgement:
When the Son of Man comes in his glory and all his angels are with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. The people of every nation will be gathered in front of him. He will separate them as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right but the goats on his left – Matthew 25:31-33.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad – 2 Corrinthians 5:10.
When we celebrate Christmas, we should remember that we are not just celebrating the birth of an ordinary baby. We are celebrating the birth of our Saviour, God in the flesh, the soon-coming King and the future Judge of the world.
What do you say?
Where on earth is the man I am supposed to marry? I am tired of waiting and I don’t want to make a mistake. I am in my late 20’s slowly approaching 30 soon and would like to settle [down in marriage] within the next one year. My family is putting a lot of pressure on me and I am starting to crumble under the pressure of having to remain sane while waiting for my own [man].
That was from a christian sister expressing her frustrations over her desire to get married but which had not come through.
If you found yourself on this page without having read the first part of the post, please go and read it before you continue with this one. That way, you will have a solid background of the issue in discourse.
Right now, instead of worrying about hooking up with the right man, you concentrate on being the right lady and the right man will find you at the right time.
We will continue from where we stopped by looking at some more advice given to the sister in question by some concerned people. (Again, please read the part one of the post – if you haven’t done so. Thank you).
Let’s us take a look at more advice:
You have painted a picture of the kind of man you are waiting for: a God fearing Man… that’s good. Every woman wants the guy of their dreams to be ready made. But very few are willing to work to make the “man of their dreams.”
Some times, from in the midst of dirt comes true lasting diamonds… Jesus Christ promised a thief paradise at his death – not the best of his disciples, nor the perfect of men, but a “thief”.
Maybe your “man” would not come the way you expect. Just as the way the Israelites expected the Messiah to be born in the palace not in a manger… My dear be open-minded… good Christians are not born, they are made… the most devout of Christians most often times were not born Christians…
What I am saying is that you should keep an open mind and don’t restrict your heart to finding him in your church or among the young pastors in your Church…
God would bring not the best person for you, but the right person for you… please I would advise you [not to] take all relationship decisions to your pastor. Better talk to your parents than your pastor… just my advise o! I’m not saying your pastor is not good in such issues.
You would be fine… live and be happy… don’t let the pressure overwhelm you.
And this one really broke it down:
Stop being too conservative; you said you’re an indoor person. If you keep staying indoors WHO would see you? Come out of the shell and let ‘’the product’’ be seen and heard.
Your appearance matters a lot – you need to look good 24/7 but in a generally accepted way. (Neither too holy looking nor too sinful looking). If you are fat – loose the weight. Most guys (like me) ABHORE FAT GIRLS as wife beacause they look lazy, dirty and sexually unattractive.
Your character too; carrying Bible and going to church everyday DOES NOT MEAN you are good natured. Even satan goes to church these days and calls himself ‘’pastor’’. BE SINCERELY GOOD NATURED. BE OPEN MINDED. BE SIMPLE NATURED.
When a joke is funny laugh – be yourself in a good mannered way. Let people see that you are humble. Be accommodating with ALL classes of people. When you come across ‘’drunkards, party freaks’’ and poor/ christian men, DON’T CARRY YOUR NOSE UP; their brother might just be Mr Perfect or Mr Perfect might just be watching you.
Be perfect in courtesy. Learn to greet anyone/everyone politely. Greeting alone has given thousands of girls husbands.
Be positive minded – imagine good things and smile and pray for them to come.
Let’s conclude with this one who gave her own advice/suggestions by telling her experience with her own sister:
I have an elder sister who will be 30 years next year. She’s unmarried too, and she’s a good christian but she’s very judgemental.
I say it without an iota of doubt that she’s been single this long because of her judgemental nature. And I have noticed that is one thing many self-acclaimed “good christians” have in common.
So if before now you have maintained a self-righteous attitude, madam, I tell you today that you have a long way to go because no one will ever be good enough for you. Please, I will advise you to maintain your virtues as a woman, but embrace the quality of open mindedness.
Learn to relate with people and learn from them instead of judging them before they even come close. People will always have excesses. It’s not yours to write them off, but to live peaceably with all men as much as you can.
By becoming more accommodating and open-minded concerning people, you will understand that we are all different because of our cultures, upbringing, orientation and even religious beliefs and this will help you have a better approach towards people and things.
However, do not mistake my post to mean that I am accusing you decisively of being judgemental or narrow minded. I’m just saying that if you are, please make an attempt to change; it could be holding you back more than you know. I am emphasizing this because I live with someone who is and I know how much it has affected her.
May God direct your path, I can’t say anything outside this because I’m just 21 yrs, very single and I don’t have too much I about all these marriage issues. I will also like to tell you to do something because you want to, not because of pressure [from other people]. That has helped me in a lot of my doings. I leave you with this. May God be your guide.
What would be your advice to a Christian lady waiting for the right man to marry? Let the conservation continue in the comment section.
In 2013, a Nigerian Christian lady published an online post on the frustrations she was facing waiting for the right man to get married to. According to her, she was under immense pressure from her family to get married.
The good part was that she was ready to get married and two she knew the kind of husband she wanted: a godly man who is filled with the word of God, a lover of God and a man fit to be a minister of the gospel.
But the bad part was that such a man was not forth coming her way (yet). And she was getting tired waiting…
“Where on earth is this man?” she had asked in utter frustration. “And does it mean all the good men are already taken?”
Let’s take a deeper peep into her situation as she narrated in her own words:
… I never thought I’d be the lady staying calm and waiting almost endlessly for the one I would spend the rest of my life with; the one who would one day become my husband and the father of my children, my best friend and love.
I am a christian and have noticed that I have a thing for Christian men who are filled with the word of God. Needless to say that I would eventually be getting into ministry in my older years, and every prophetic word I have heard about my marriage has pointed to the fact that the man God has prepared for me would also most likely be in ministry and a huge God lover.
Now the thing is where on earth is this man? I am tired of waiting and I don’t want to make a mistake.
I am in my late 20’s slowly approaching 30 soon and would like to settle [down in marriage] within the next one year.
My family is putting a lot of pressure on me and I am starting to crumble under the pressure of having to remain sane while waiting for my own [man].
I have indeed met a lot of other men who I dare not settle with. eg party rockers, drinkers, womanizers and the rest. Does it mean that all the good men are taken?
Aside waiting, I also want to feel loved, wanted and appreciated. I want him so much already.
I am a professional lady, I am yoruba, I am gentle, kind hearted and want to continue serving God. What can I do to remain calm? (Source: Nairaland )
I felt touched by the sister’s post, hence I decided to offer my two cents in response. (Bear in mind this was way back in 2013).
You sound like a decent girl, so I would say there is no need to become desperate…. And don’t let anyone, family members inclusive, unduly pressure you into Marriage. The danger in that is that you might end up with the wrong guy.
Bear in mind that 28 is not too old [to get married]. I understand your anxiety but be careful not to descend into desperation….
Right now, instead of worrying about hooking up with the right man, you concentrate on being the right lady and the right man will find you at the right time.
Trust in God to give you the right man. In the midst of wolves parading as men, God knows the right man for the right woman.
Be convinced that God loves you enough to give you the best husband. There are still some good men, husband material, out there, looking for someone like you.
But like they say, if you don’t define, you won’t find. So Please take time to list out the things you want in your husband. Everyday, look at the list, be positive about it; envision him come to you. It may sound funny but it works.
With that frame of mind, you can now pray: Oh Lord, wherever my husband is, let him locate me. Bring him to me or take me to where he is so we can meet each other.
It worked for me that way. And today, my wife and I are happily married. You will soon testify too.
As you would rightly expect, there was a barrage of other advice or suggestions in response to that post. Some of them are not worth your time, so I won’t bother to share them here.
However, there were some I considered very useful, and I will share a few of them here with the hope that someone in similar situation may learn from it.
Check out this one first:
I understand your frustration and exhaustive patience. However, He makes all things beautiful in His time and not our time. A lot of single ladies have made terrible and life threatening mistakes because of impatience.
While waiting for the right man, keep adding values to yourself, study good and bad marriages to learn how a home should be, read books and enjoy your singlehood to the maximum in a godly way.
“The vision may tarry, wait for it, it shall speak…” You need to exercise patience and trust God with all your heart. Need I add that this is the time you should draw closer to God – not for what He can give but pleasing and doing His will.
So my sister, do not let your age or pressure from any source push you to do what is not right. Do not mind people talking about you closing in to 30. I wonder the importance of the age if one lives a useless life.
And this one:
…All I can say is that He is preparing you for the task ahead in your ministry and in your home. See this waiting period as an opportunity for you to develop yourself spiritually as it would come in handy when you get married. You will agree with me that staying married is more important than getting married.
And then this:
You are just 28 so its not yet time to press the panic button and please do not let anyone pressure you yet. You say you love Christian men so at least you know what you want. So the question is where are you likely to get Christian men?
Church is the simple answer! Again not all men in Church are Christians but I believe you have the Spirit of God and you will be able to tell the difference.
I also encourage you to get more involved in Church activities, Bible study, mid-week service, become a worker and put yourself in a position where you will meet Christian men. Again be careful because lots of bad boys are in church these days; but you have the Spirit of God in you and you will know the difference.
I can even suggest you try to get close to your Pastor or his wife. Lots of Pastors actually do hook-ups with Church members these days and if your pastor is nice, he could hook you up with a nice gentleman in church.
Again, tell your friends and their husbands too that they could hook you up with their friends or cousins etc. You just can’t stay at home and expect Mr. Right to come around. Some people don’t like hook-ups but I see nothing wrong in it.
Lastly you say you are a professional, do you have friends where you work? Try to be accommodating more and go for Christmas parties and office parties, you could meet someone there as well.
But please make sure you know what you want in a man because there are devils out there who are just waiting to prey on young innocent girls like you so be careful. You are a Christian and remember the virtues of Christianity. God help you.
What would be your own advice to the lady in question?
Have you ever had that feeling of being emotionally overloaded and you are struggling to cope with demands of life? If your answer is yes, I’m afraid you might be experiencing what is called “stress.”
And if you are experiencing stress, what is the implication to you? I mean what does your stress level reveal to you if you are a believer in Jesus Christ?
Generally speaking, what do you understand by the word ‘stress’?
“Stress is a feeling of emotional or physical tension. It can come from any event or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry, or nervous. Stress is your body’s reaction to a challenge or demand. In short bursts, stress can be positive, such as when it helps you avoid danger or meet a deadline” (MedlinePlus).
If stress can be positive, it means there is negative stress as well. According to those who should know, “Stress becomes negative when a person faces continuous challenges without relief or relaxation between stressors. As a result, the person becomes overworked, and stress-related tension builds.”
As a believer in Christ, beyond the common understanding of stress as a ” feeling of emotional or physical tension,” you should also note that stress has some far-reaching implications for you; it reveals your spiritual condition (the centre of your focus) at the point you are being stressed.
So what does stress reveal about you?
In an episode of Sid Roth’s It’s Supernatural on youtube, I watched the host interview Drs. Dennis and Jennifer Clark. The couple are pastors in ministry and are involved in helping people overcome toxic emotional feelings and setting them free from emotional bondage, no matter how long those negative feelings have been held.
Towards the middle of that interview, Dr. Roth asked the following question, “Doctors tell us that stress is really bad; it causes lots of problems. What do do you say?”
Dr. Dennis Clark’s response to that question was really an eye-opener for me. That’s why I’m sharing it with you here, with the hope that it benefits you too:
“I say stress can be a friend. It can tell you that Jesus isn’t ruling at that point in time. By definition, stress means you’re emotionally controlled by people or circumstances. And you cannot be stressed and trust God at the same time. It’s a physiological and spiritual impossibility.”
I was like wow; this is fantastic! I never saw stress in that light before. Did you see what I meant when I said it was an eye-opener?
Now let’s break it down further:
1. Stress can be your friend as a believer in Christ. In other words, it lets you know that Jesus is not ruling in your heart at that time; you are not walking in the spirit or you have (temporarily) shifted your heart away from God.
2. Stress means that you are emotionally being controlled by people or circumstances. In other words, you are not the one in control of the situations in your life. And if you are not in control, something or someone is controlling you (and it’s not God!). What is that thing or who is that person controlling you?
3. You can not be stressed and trust God at the same time. According to Dr Clark, it is not physiologically and spiritually possible to do so. So it means that as a believer, the more you are stressed the more you will found it difficult to trust God.
I believe you have seen a fresh perspective of what stress reveals about you as a believer in Christ: If you are stressed, it means you are not trusting God. I hope you will take appropriate measures to refocus your heart and your trust.
Thank you for reading and what do you think?
What does it mean to worry?
It means to “feel or cause to feel anxious or troubled about actual or potential problems.” So when you worry, it means you are in a state of anxiety and trouble “over actual or potential problems.”
Broadly speaking, “Worry refers to the thoughts, images, emotions, and actions of a negative nature in a repetitive, uncontrollable manner that results from a proactive cognitive risk analysis made to avoid or solve anticipated potential threats and their potential consequences” (Wikipedia).
As a believer in Christ, you know you are not supposed to worry so much. But you worry all the same. Why?
You worry to the point that stress overwhelms you, emotionally or otherwise. That’s not the situation you should put yourself in.
Jesus said in Matthew chapter 6 (NLT):
25 “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? … 27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? …
31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God[e] above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
As Jesus said we should not worry, it means it is within our control not to worry. So that tells me you are not speaking the truth if you say, “I can’t help worrying.”
Of course you can help it if you make up your mind to do so. Worrying does not grip you without your consent.
You play an active role whenever you are worrying, How? By being actively involved in a pattern of negative thinking over real or imagined situations.
As a believer in Christ, can you deal with worrying? I would say yes! If you can refocus, you can deal with it. But a lot will depend on your answer to the following question:
What’s Your Priority?
Before Jesus said we should not worry about tomorrow, He emphasized the need for us to make seeking the Kingdom of God the greatest priority of our lives. In His words:
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. Matthew 6:33, NLT
As believers in Christ, seeking the Kingdom of God should be our main focus – our priority. The purpose of doing that is to enable us embed our trust in God and not on the daily pursuits of life.
The truth is that if the daily pursuits of life become your main focus and topmost priority (at the expense of kingdom focus) worrying will become a natural consequence.
When you worry, it should be a sign to you that you have shifted your focus from God to other things. And worrying has its consequences; it causes emotional stress, even physical ailments.
So let your mind’s main focus be on God and your worries will be a lot less. As Prophet Isaiah says, God keeps you in perfect peace (worry-free) if your mind is stayed on Him (Isaiah 26:3).
What do you think?
Every one of us have men in our lives. We have them as our fathers, husbands, brothers, uncles, cousins, pastors, colleagues, friends, neighbours, employers, employees, doctors, to name but a few.
These people influence our lives and positively impact the society as well. Sometimes we celebrate them (like on father’s day), sometimes we don’t. But each one of us should have at least one reason to celebrate the men in our lives.
What for? The work hard to make our lives and society better. They provide leadership, provision, protection and so on so forth for us.
I’m not suggesting that men should become the object of our collective worship. But I’m saying there is nothing wrong with celebrating men for their immense contribution to the well-being of the society.
Today is that day set aside around the world for such celebration; every year, the 19th day of November is observed as International Men’s Day (IMD). And by extension, November is sometimes referred to as International Men’s month.
Now, the question is, “What is the purpose of having an International Men’s Day?” It is generally understood as an “occasion to celebrate boys and men’s achievements and contributions, in particular for their contributions to community, family, marriage, and child care. The broader and ultimate aim of the event is to promote basic humanitarian values” (Wikipedia).
Did you notice that boys were included alongside men to be celebrated? That is to say, it is a day earmarked to celebrate the male gender’s contribution to society. (Sorry ladies, you can wait till the 20th day of the month of March when the next International Women’s Day will be celebrated).
In pursuing the objective of celebrating men’s and boy’s positive contribution to society, special focus is made on some specific areas of boy’s and men’s lives. These are encapsulated in what is referred to as:
The 6 Pillars of International Men’s Day
According to the IMD’s website, the objectives of the International Men’s Day are as listed below:
- To promote positive male role models; not just movie stars and sports men but every day, working class men who are living decent, honest lives.
- To celebrate men’s positive contributions to society, community, family, marriage, child care, and to the environment.
- To focus on men’s health and well-being; social, emotional, physical and spiritual.
- To highlight discrimination against men; in areas of social services, social attitudes and expectations, and law.
- To improve gender relations and promote gender equality
- To create a safer, better world; where people can be safe and grow to reach their full potential.
These are noble objectives you might say. But to which extent are they being achieved? That’s a question for another day!
Meanwhile, if you are a male reading this, don’t just read and walk away indifferently. I would like you to take another look at the six objectives listed above as a form of self evaluation to enable you identify areas for possible personal improvement.
If you are like me, we know we have not been the best we could be or did the best we could do in those stated cardinal areas. That’s to say, there is still room for improvement for all of us boys and men.
On the other hand, if you are a non-male, you may also want to evaluate the six objectives to identify the ones that appeal to you most. You can then help the men and boys around you improve in those areas of their lives or simply suggest to them as specific areas of improvement.
Happy International Men’s Day!
Let the conversation continue in the comment section.
Recall that when I posted my review of Ufuomaee’s The House Girl, I promised you that I would also read and review some other books by the same author. This post will be my fulfillment of that promise and I am glad to do it pro bono.
Some months have passed since I’ve completed reading the Perfect Love from cover to cover. I know I should have done the review earlier than now but after several weeks of doing the reviewing in my head, I have decided to put pen to paper. So please spare me some minutes from your precious time as I share my thoughts about the book.
About the book
Perfect Love is about the travails of Onome who has been unhappily married to her husband Temi for six years. Just before their sixth wedding anniversary, Onome meets her ex-boy friend and this turns her world upside down and she became “…a wandering heart. A restless heart. A troubled heart.”
Did Onome fall into the temptations that ensued? Did her husband find out about the other man? Was their marriage consumed by the lack of love and commitment in the relationship? Was she as committed to the marriage as she was to her writing career? It will be worth your time to find out the answers to these questions and more by reading the book.
The book is written by the brainy Ofuomaee, blogger at Grace & Truth, social entrepreneur and author of multiple christian fiction books. In the Perfect Love, the author continues in her now well established style of teaching valuable christian-living lessons via fictional stories that readers find largely believable and relatable.
The only departure from the author’s usual style is that instead of her being the one telling the stories and unfolding the narratives, she allowed each character in the book to do so by themselves. In a way, that also gives the reader a special experience while devouring the book.
The journaling style the author employed in writing the book gave me a breath of fresh air while reading it – a different style of presentation from anything I’ve read recently. As I noted earlier, the author allowed the characters to tell their stories by themselves and in their own words – what they did, could have done, thought about etc.
My worst and favourite character
If I were to pick out my worst character in Perfect Love, it would have to be no other person than Onome herself. Granted that she was very a brilliant and likable person, she continued to make choices that left much to be desired.
It was very annoying to me that she professed to be a born again Christian but had little or no commitment to living up to that sublime identity. And this contributed to her being entangled in the avoidable web of marital frustrations and unhappiness that she was enmeshed in.
My take is that she was, to a greater part, the architect of her own marital misfortunes. In one moment of reflection, she hit the nail on the head when she admitted, “I think our foundation was all wrong, we’d never taken the time to correct it. Yes, we both believed in God [but] He wasn’t Lord of our hearts, our marriage [and] our home.”
Most of the things she went through could have been avoided had she been truly committed to her profession of being a child of God. But then I have realised that, in many ways, Onome is not different from many of us who claim to be christians; we acknowledged God as our Saviour but we hardly let Him be the Lord of our lives.
And we claim we know God but we live our lives like we don’t know Him. What ever happened to the injunction of Jesus to us in Matthew 5:16,
“… let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”?
Enough of Onome’s spiritual and emotional immaturity! I believe we all have some serious soul-searching to do. The earlier we get started the better.
If we must claim to have a relationship with God, let it show in our words and in our actions. Otherwise, we will not be able to escape the consequences of a hypocritical lifestyle.
On the other hand, I would pick the marriage counselor as my favorite character in the book. Her uncommon wisdom, christian maturity and honour shined through her counselling room. I saw her as a good ambassador of God and her profession.
I would assure you that you would pick one or two wisdom from the lips of that impressive marriage counselor when you read the book. As she says in one instant, “When you change your priories and give more time to things that matter, your life will be better for it.”
And who doesn’t want a better life?
I think Ufuomaee did a great job in the Perfect Love, addressing such familiar but important issues as communication in marriage, dealing with infidelity, divorce, marriage counselling, forgiveness, and so on. Although the book centres mainly on marriage and family affairs, I have no doubt that both married and unmarried people will find it helpful.
I definitely had my moments of both sobriety and thrill as I rummaged the pages of Perfect Love. And I believe I have many reasons to thank Ufuomaee for yet another good contribution to the genre of christian fiction.
Thank you for reading!
You can share your own thoughts in the comment section.
Let’s assume you know where you are going, or what you want in life. That’s great and commendable on your part because many people you will find around you have not yet figured that out.
If you happen to meet someone like that whom you are interested in or whom who desire a relationship with, but you are not sure exactly where they are in their lives or what they want in future, one way you can find out is to ask them the right questions. With the right questions about their future plans, you will be able to gain an insight into the kind of future such people envisage for themselves.
That brings us to the point where we can talk about what is known as future review questions.
Future review questions are the questions you ask so “you can help other people (and yourself) to clarify what’s important for their future” (R. J Adams). For instance, “How do you see yourself in the next five years” is a future review question.
Future review questions help people to describe a preferred future; help them to paint a “portrait of their life as they desire it to be.” It is about articulating the things that are important to you, without which you would not consider life to be satisfying.
It makes sense to find out where your would-be ‘relationship partner’ stand on this. Right? Continue reading…
The Possible Scenarios
There are at least three possibilities that will unfold once you begin to ask future review questions to someone you just met and with whom you are interested in establishing a warm relationship with:
- He or she will be willing and is able to respond to your questions by clearly painting the portrait of the future that he or she desires. In other words, he or she will readily answer your future review questions;
- He or she is willing but unable to clearly describe the kind of the future he or she desires. In other words, he or she has some difficulties answering your future review questions;
- He or she is not willing to go into that kind of discussion with you. In other words, he or she refuses to answer your future review questions.
What ever response you might get from any of the three situations described above will give you a huge insight into the kind of person you are dealing with and how to further relate with him or her going forward. Please stay with me, you will find some useful hints on how to go about it.
In his online book, How To Find A Good Christian Wife, And Keep Her, R. J. Adams gives us a detailed explanation or suggestions on how to handle any of those three scenarios. Although his explanations were given chiefly in the context of a single man seeking for relationship with a woman, I believe the underlining principles could also be applied to other forms of mutually beneficial relationships of interest to you.
Please hear him:
“With those people who readily answer your question, you will likely have an interesting conversation about what is most important to them and what would make them satisfied. In those cases where you can add something to their preferred future, or where you can help them achieve their desired results, you have the basis for a long and satisfying friendship or relationship. In cases where you cannot help them, perhaps you can recommend a resource who can.
With people who have difficulty answering your future review question, help them by asking a series of smaller questions. Help them articulate the things that are important to them. Ask what they would like to do, where they would like to go, what they would like to have. Ask how they would prefer spending their time, what kind of people they want to be with, and so on. This can be a very creative and stimulating discussion.
…One of the greatest services you can perform for these people is to coach them to think through and talk about their desired outcomes. And, here again, if you can help make their future come true for them, you have just established the foundation for a great relationship.
What about the people who refuse to answer your future review question? Their unwillingness to answer likely means one of two things. First, their commitment may be to the past, not the future. They may not have thought about their future as something where they have any influence.
Secondly, their unwillingness to share their desired future with you may indicate a lack of trust. In either case, you have no basis for a relationship. Some people don’t have the courage or desire to dream, or they don’t trust you enough to share their thoughts with you. Don’t waste your time. Move on to someone else…” (emphasis mine).
What do you think?
“No body is perfect,” goes the popular saying. The truth of that statement is particularly obvious in a committed marital union between a man and woman.
Except you want to deceive yourself, you will gladly own up to the fact that the person you married is not a spotless angel. But this is no time to begin pointing accusing fingers at your spouse as the one with the most imperfections, because as you know, you yourself are not without some blemishes.
In other words, you often fall below each other’s expectations. Despite these imperfections, both of you can still be at peace with each other and hopefully be happier too.
If that is part of your marital goal, then you will allow me to proffer a few suggestions that will be helpful to you in that respect:
Here are seven simple ways you can deal with the imperfections of your spouse:
1. Accept that your spouse is not perfect
Your spouse is not an angel, so don’t expect that he or she will not make mistakes sometimes. And when that happens, please do show some understanding.
Truth be told, neither you nor your spouse is perfect. Perhaps you should let this guide your expectations so that you suffer less frustrations when your spouse’s behaviour falls below your esteemed expectations.
2. Be patient with your spouse
If you have come to terms with the fact that your spouse is not perfect and you are committed to loving him or her despite that, I am going to add that you should be patient with him or her.
I will not promise you that your spouse will grow into a faultless angel someday. But I can at least opine that if he or she is committed to your marriage as you are, there will be remarkable positive change of behaviour over time when you exercise the due patience with.
3. Maintain your sanity
Your spouse will ‘lose it’ sometimes and when that happens be sure to keep your own sanity and be at your best behaviours. Things will go downhill in your marriage if both of you decide to vent and and get mad at each other at the same time.
A wise spouse once told the better-half, “If you spit fire, I will vomit water.” The point here is, you and your spouse should not be spitting fire at the same time.
4. Talk things over with your spouse
In as much as I want you to cut some slack for your spouse, there will be times when it is important you talk things over with him or her. But you have to be gentle and nice over it, else you might trigger a volcanic eruption in the process.
In talking things over with your spouse, be humble, loving and considerate. Resist the temptation of pointing accusing fingers at each other. Instead of looking for who is wrong, focus on what is wrong and deal with it.
If your spouse raises his or voice in the process, keep yours low. Apologise where necessary and accept responsibility as appropriate.
Engage in the conversation in such a away that it strengthens your marriage and not in a way that tears it apart.
5. Avoid the silent treatment
There are times silence may be golden, but at times too, it can be a time-bomb waiting to explode. I trust that you know the difference. While it is not okay to shout at your spouse, on the other hand, don’t use the silent treatment as a tool for affliction in marriage.
It is good to keep silent sometimes in order not to offend in words or as part of your anger management strategy. But if your spouse desires commmunication with you, do not give him or her the silent treatment to punish him or her for what they did to you.
6. Celebrate your spouse’s strength
Despite your spouse’s so-called imperfections, he or she must have some strengths as well. Identify those strengths and celebrate them.
I am totally convinced that your spouse is not a good-for-nothing fellow, otherwise you would not have married him or her. So I am telling you for free that you can manage your spouse’s imperfections better by focusing on his or her strengths and celebrating them.
Compliment your spouse’s good behaviours and be less critical of the bad ones. It is not easy to do, but it is worth the try.
7. Pray regularly for your spouse
It is not enough for you to talk to your spouse. You should also talk to God about spouse – not in form of endless bitter complaints but in form of regular loving prayers.
Trying to force a change in behaviour on your spouse may be counter-productive. But when you pray, you invite God to handle the situation in the best possible way.
Don’t say you don’t know what to pray about concerning your spouse. Are there things you like about your spouse? I believe the answer is yes. Begin your prayers by thanking God for those things.
Also, the things that annoy you about him or her should be part of the things you should pray about. Your dreams for her, the things she cares about, her personal goals are some of the things you can pray for your wife about.
You have read my views. Let’s hear yours in the comment section.
©Copyright 2019 | Victor Uyanwanne
I have since realised that there were unique experiences we had as kids who grew up in the villages that our counterparts in a city such as Lagos may not relate to. A little of that sentiment of mine was tickled this morning when my seven year old son asked me a simple question:
“Daddy, why do some people put out buckets, bowls and other containers when it rains?”
“To collect some rain water for use,” I replied rather too flippantly, without even looking at the direction where the question came from. But then, almost immediately the salient reality of that question began to dawn on me.
The answer I gave should have been pretty obvious to him you might think. But please give the boy a break; even if for no other reason but because collecting rain water for household use has never been part of his experience in his few years of life on earth.
With portable water now being pumped to the kitchen, bathroom and wherever else water is needed in the house, how would he appreciate the fact that many people around my country still depend on rain water for survival?
“For what kind of use, daddy?” he sought to clarify.
“My dear, it’s for domestic use.” This time I had to look at him in the face, with my hands on each of his shoulders, leaning forward in the process.
When I was at his age (more than three decades ago), I didn’t have to wonder why people harvested rain water. The experience was too common-place for me not to have known the purpose.
But his question afforded me a genuine coachable moment to point out the fact that many homes still cannot do without relying on rain water for some of – if not for all – their domestic uses. I guess that’s still part of the reality of living in a developing nation.
I went on to explain to him how we used to depend on rain water as the main source of water supply way back in the village where I was born. Just like everyone else in that small community, my mum and my older siblings would put out different sizes of containers to collect rain water whenever it poured.
Even the roof of the houses there were embedded with water conveyance systems. That way, the abundant rain water that hits atop the covering corrugated iron sheets were channeled through well-constructed gutters linked with vertical trunk pipes that emptied directly into underground concrete tanks or into big volume surface water reservoirs.
The water so-collected would then be fetched out and put to daily use (washing, bathing, cooking, cleaning and yes, drinking) all-year round. The process was reliable and sustainable too. And because of the beautiful natural vegetation surrounding the environment we lived in, coupled with the absence of fossil fuel using factories, the problem of acid rain was non-existent.
You see, people like my son who were born in an urban city would never fully understand that kind of experience which we considered common-place while growing up. And I completely understand!
Perhaps a little walk back memory lane will underscore my point. I was born in a village in the present day Delta State, Nigeria. I grew up there till my teen years before I finally relocated to the city of Lagos.
That little village was blessed with a few amenities that made it standout amidst other ones around it. It had a well-tarred Trunk B road that ran through it from one end to another connecting it directly to the State Capital at the far end, separated only by a few other villages and towns.
At that time telephone service was a huge luxury way beyond the reach of 99.9999% of the population. Even at that, the village was already linked to the national telephone backbone. And apart from the availability of analogue phone service powered by the now defunct NITEL (Nigeria Telecommunications), the village also had electricity supply from the national grid.
However, water supply was the biggest problem we had to grapple with in that village. No streams, no boreholes and no portable water supply from anywhere. Only rain water, which was abundant doing the wet season and scanty in the dry season, was available.
Thanks to a failed pipe-borne water project sponsored by the then military state government, the various households in the village never had the privilege of regular supply of treated water pumped to them. Looking back now, I would say that was my first experience of a failed government project being commissioned as successfully completed.
Whether it was the contractor’s gross incompetence or the systemic corruption in high places that robbed the community of a properly executed portable water facility, my young mind could not have comprehended it then. But now the picture is clearer.
That was how the pictured looked like some three decades ago. Unfortunately, that’s the same story (or even worse) that could be told of many vital but abandoned (water) projects across many states of the Federation today.
Could the experience have been better for the masses, especially with respect to water supply? You tell me what you think!
As a parent, how much do you even realise that you are your children’s number one life coach? When it comes to coaching your kids, do not underestimate your role as a parent, and please do not be lazy playing that role in your children’s lives.
You may assume that your kids will know some things on their own, but then you get to find out they don’t. You may also assume that they should be taught everything in school, but at last you get to discover they weren’t. That means there is a learning gap between what they are supposed to know and what they actually do know.
In what little ways can you bridge that gap with your kids in a way that engenders good rapport between you and them? Of course, there might be many ways to that end. But in this post, I will suggest capturing the coachable moments with them.
Coachable or teachable moments’ refer to those unplanned or informal opportunities for you as a parent to have conversations with your kids or wards with the aim of helping them to solve problems or learn a good lesson they could use in life. It is about impacting valuable lessons to your kids while life is at play.
Here are 3 ways you capture the coachable moments with your kids
1. Don’t be an absentee parent
One good advice I can give you as a parent is this: be there for your kids. And I know being there for your kids can take many forms. For instance, it can be about providing for them or paying their school fees. Any average parent would score high on those.
But how about being physically available for them as their life coauch? Certainly life will throw up coachable moments, but if you are not there for them, how can you take up that little responsibitlity?
2. Look out for coachable moments
When you are there for your kids, you will often find some coachable moments to explore. They abound in your everyday relationship or activities with them. Train your eyes (and your other senses) to recognise coachable moments with your kids and you will surely find some.
Whether you are at the dining table with them,or watching television together or you are driving them to school, always look out for coachable moments. If you are not looking for, you may pass the opportunities when they present themselves.
3. Utilise the coachable moments
When life hands you a coachable moment with your kids, please don’t flunk it. The coachable moment may come in two ways: an opportunity for you to reinforce an observed positive behaviour or correct a bad behaviour.
In either case, utilising the coachable moments enables you as parent mould your kids or wards into better version of themselves.
As a parent, if you are there for your kids or wards, life will definitely hand you some coachable moments. Look out for such moments in your every day activities with your kids. And when you do find them, take advantage of those moments and impart lessons that will help your kids or wards become better versions of themselves
Have you had any coachable moments with your kids? Please share your experience in the comment section.
How are atheists made? Does the Bible contribute in creating atheists? Instead of revealing God to us, is the Bible now taking people away from God?
I asked those questions not because I don’t believe in the Bible anymore, neither is it because I do not know the purpose of the Bible. But because I want to frontally address a wrong notion a reader has about the Bible and atheism.
One atheist who commented on one of my posts has alleged that “the Bible is the best book for creating atheists.” I would not let that pass just like that because it’s possible there are some other people with that same kind of erroneous thinking.
First and foremost, any Christian worth the name will not dispute the divine inspiration of the Bible, neither will he or she agree with the suggestion that the Bible creates atheists. But in the interest of those who may not be so grounded, further examination may be necessary.
To examine the claim that the Bible is the best book for creating atheists, we would just take a quick look at what purpose the Bible serves.
In his second letter to Timothy, apostle Paul categorically stated the inspiration behind, and the purpose of, the (Bible) Scriptures:
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for instruction, for conviction, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
From that verse, we can see that the Bible scripture was inspired by God and is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” and “to equip us for every good work.”
As one source puts it, “The Bible is great literature and the all-time number-one best-seller. It contains history, entertaining stories, poetry, philosophy, and personal letters. But, more than that, the Bible is God’s Word. If we have to speak of a single purpose of the Bible, it would be to reveal God to us. There are many things that we could never know about God unless He told them to us. The Bible is God’s self-revelation to humanity. The Bible also tells us who we are. It tells us of our sin and of God’s plan of salvation in Jesus Christ.”
Despite the reality described above, there are people who have a complete misunderstanding of what the Bible is about. And that’s rather unfortunate.
Recently on this blog, I had an extended interaction with an atheist who read and commented on one of my posts. At some point during the online conversation, the atheist made the following comment about the Bible and God:
…The bible has numerous books filled with violence and much of this violence is by your god. It sounds like he has no idea how to be a god of peace. Doesn’t he have an anger management problem, if he exists? No wonder that the bible is the best book for creating atheists. You need to read it properly.
My response to him went as follows:
If you believe that God has an anger issue, it means you are admitting that He exists in the first place. When you are honest about that, we can begin to explore the nature of God, which obviously you have misunderstood. Your claim about the Bible being a book for creating atheists is malicious. You know it’s not true. You became an atheist by your choice… so stop blaming it on the Bible.
I don’t know what everyone else think. But in my own opinion, the Bible is not a book for creating atheists. So it could not have been the best book for doing so as claimed by that reader.
Anyone that chooses to become an atheist, does so out of his or her own volition. So it will be wrong to blame it on the Bible.
The Bible is a book about God and His people. It tells the story of man from creation till when the world will end and beyond. It is a book for conviction, instruction, correction in righteousness and it prepares us for good works.
The Bible serves to bring us closer to God; not to take us away from Him. To that effect, anyone who claims to have read the Bible back to back without discovering God in it has either read a different Bible or has read it with the wrong mindset.
What do you think say?
Any follower of this blog would already know that I believe in God. That fact has never been hidden in any way.
I would add that I do not just believe in God in the general sense of it, I believe in Him in the sense of having a personal relationship with Him through faith in His Son Jesus Christ whom I have willingly accepted as my Lord and personal Saviour.
On this blog I have written sufficient number of posts to have made it clear enough that I don’t belong to atheists’ camp. So you can imagine my surprise when one of my readers (ostensibly a first-timer) suggested in one of his comments to the post The Problems with Atheists that I could be an “atheist masquerading as a Protestant Fundamentalist.”
In the referenced post, I had pointed out that:
Atheists do not have what it takes to come to the conclusion that God does not exist. So when you have anyone claiming God does not exist, understand that he or she is either being insincere or is displaying his or her ignorance. Or as the Bible puts it, he or she is simply being foolish.
Just like the Sadducees that accosted Jesus over a question on resurrection, whereas they didn’t believe in resurrection, the problem with atheists who go about discrediting God and the notion of His existence is that they neither know the Scriptures nor the power of God.”
Though not unexpected, there were many backlashes from atheists over that post. Sad to say, many of the comments from them went off course. One of such comments was what inspired the title of this present post:
Are you a Catholic? Do you accept the teaching of the church? Isn’t it the church that interprets the bible? Or are you really an atheist who is masquerading under the mask of Protestant Fundamentalism?
If you’re a Fundamentalist, the former Fundamentalist pastor (now atheist) called Bruce Gerencser will chop your arguments up and make mince meat of them. He doesn’t hate God. He just doesn’t believe that God exists. What he hates is Fundamentalists pontificating on God and Fundamentalists misrepresenting atheists.
You guys, both Catholics and Protestants, are suffering from what Richard Dawkins calls “The God delusion”.
Although the comment was full of rabbit trails, I cut to the chase in the response I gave to it:
I’m not a Catholic, neither am I Protestant fundamentalist, as you put it. And your suggestion that I could be an atheist is even more laughable. How could I be so foolish to be an atheist? I know better!
For the avoidance of doubts, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ who believes in God as the creator of all things, who has accepted the saving grace that is available in Christ Jesus alone for the forgiveness of my sin and I’m living my life to please God.
I understand what the Bible says, “only fools say God doesn’t exist.” So between those of us who believe that God exists and those [of you] that don’t believe, we know who is delusioned.
Dawkins’ book is seriously mistaken in the claim that there is no God. From the reviews I have read, I know the book is an attack on God and Christianity. Anger. Hatred.
It is okay to note that the God he claims doesn’t exist, makes him so angry. That’s the same trait I have seen in many atheists I have interacted with.
Talking about the atheists I have had online conversations with in the past, many of them (if not all of them) would also call us delusionists for believing that God exists. Recently, I had to quip to one of them:
“If those of us who believe in God are delusionists, then those [of you] who don’t believe in Him must be worse off because atheism does not make sense at all.”
That response may appear harsh to some people, but that was as nice I could be. I believe the irony in it is clear enough for everyone to understand.
For emphasis sake, I am not an atheist. And I don’t want to be one. I believe that God exists and I believe in His Son Jesus Christ as my Lord and personal Saviour.
Atheism does not make sense to me at all. It’s all foolishness parading as knowledge. “”The fool says in his heart, “There is no God”” Psalms 14:1. I stand on that Biblical position.
All the same, I thank God for His mercies that are seeing some atheists come to Christ. How I wish these ones here will one day see their folly and also come to Christ before it becomes too late for them.
Thank you for reading. Your views are welcome.
The account of the ever popular story of the prodigal son in the Bible is one of the greatest stories of forgiveness ever written. Jesus told the story to demonstrate the unconditional love of God for us mankind.
No matter how much we think we have erred against God, He will always forgive and accept us if we come back home to Him. As Jesus Himself assured us, “…he that comes to me, I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37).
As parents, can we learn and apply that principle in the way we treat our erring children? I will like to answer ‘yes’ to that question.
The prodigal son’s father forgave his betrayal, disloyalty, rebellion, foolishness, greed, recklessness, haughtiness, impatience and extravagance. There is no reason we should not extend same kind of forgiveness to our erring children – irrespective of the offences they have committed, or will ever commit against us.
We do not easily give up on those we love – whatever they do to us. And we love our children. So why shouldn’t we always forgive them when they err against us?
As humble parents, we will admit that our children constantly do things that annoy us. Blame it on the effect of hormones or peer pressure or whatever reasons that may be adduced, our children may not always be at their best behaviours towards us. That’s the reality of the life we live in as the earthly custodians of those precious souls.
A humble parent forgives his/her children all their wrongs because he/she too needs forgiveness from the Father above.
So when our children fall below our expectations (they will definitely do), should we continue to hold it against them? I think we should forgive them!
Should we ostracize them when their behaviours embarrass us? I think we shouldn’t!
First and foremost, we owe forgiveness to our children for whatever offences they have committed or will ever commit against us. Forgiveness is good for our overall mental and emotional well-being. Besides, God Himself does not expect any less from us.
Secondly, we should never cut-off from our children because they broke our hearts. Whether we like it or not, we are bound to them forever by our blood relationship. So as parent’s we
cannot should not disown our children when they err.
Just like the loving father forgave the biblical prodigal son, we should always forgive our erring children. No matter how grave the offences might be, let us find it in our hearts to forgive them. It is part of our calling as parents.
How do you think parents should handle their erring children?